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Eager to help parents understand what their kids were learning in school, teachers Brittany Harris and Colleen Ryan decided to bring school to them — with the help of a big red school bus.

"A lot of our parents don't have cars, or the shifts they work don't work with the schedule of time teachers are available at school, so this service allows convenience for them," Ryan explains.

Harris bought the old bus — which she and Ryan named The Passage — from a relative last fall after struggling to connect with families in her low-income Chattanooga, Tennessee, district.


The educators stocked it with tables, chairs, books, games, and iPads, and they took it on the road.

[rebelmouse-image 19530438 dam="1" original_size="700x499" caption="Ryan (left) and Harris on the bus. Photo by The Passage/Facebook." expand=1]Ryan (left) and Harris on the bus. Photo by The Passage/Facebook.

Meetings on the bus last 30 minutes and focus on either math or reading.

One of the goals is to update parents, many of whom are unfamiliar with Common Core methods, on the new problem-solving techniques their children are using to do their homework.

Breakfast is often included — as are games, including math bingo, Trouble, and Legos.

[rebelmouse-image 19530439 dam="1" original_size="700x854" caption="Harris works with a student and parent on the bus. Photo by The Passage/Facebook." expand=1]Harris works with a student and parent on the bus. Photo by The Passage/Facebook.

"To hear the student talk about [how] the bus being at their house was the highlight of their weekend because they got to show their teacher their house is enlightening," Ryan says.

Harris initially paid for the mini-school-on-wheels out of her own pocket, an experience shared by many teachers who are increasingly expected to furnish their own school supplies.  

In 2015, K-12 educators spent an average of nearly $500 on furniture, cleaning supplies, poster board, and other essential items for their classrooms — not including side projects like The Passage.

[rebelmouse-image 19530440 dam="1" original_size="700x525" caption="Harris and Ryan shop for supplies at a local IKEA. Photo by The Passage/Facebook." expand=1]Harris and Ryan shop for supplies at a local IKEA. Photo by The Passage/Facebook.

The project is now funded by several grants.

"We knew we wanted to do this no matter what," Ryan says.

Ryan credits The Passage for helping her and Harris integrate more deeply into the community where they work.

The educators have taken the bus to block parties and hosted group events, though being welcomed into their students' homes is often the highlight of a day on the road.

"It brings a whole new perspective to a teacher," she says.

[rebelmouse-image 19530441 dam="1" original_size="700x504" caption="Photo by The Passage/Facebook." expand=1]Photo by The Passage/Facebook.

In addition to the grants that help furnish materials for the rolling classroom, the bus receives donated books and supplies.

The mobile learning lab is already showing results.

One boy who had trouble understanding some assignments did a 180 after Ryan and Harris came knocking on his door.

"[He] was great in math but struggled in reading," Ryan says. "With the bus, we taught him strategies of how to understand word problems even if he couldn't read it fully, which allowed him to pass his benchmark math test."

For some pupils, she explains, learning is about more than academics.

It's showing up that matters.

"A simple act of just going to a house can lift the lowest of spirits of a student."

Pop Culture

Artist uses AI to create ultra realistic portraits of celebrities who left us too soon

What would certain icons look like if nothing had happened to them?

Mercury would be 76 today.

Some icons have truly left this world too early. It’s a tragedy when anyone doesn’t make it to see old age, but when it happens to a well-known public figure, it’s like a bit of their art and legacy dies with them. What might Freddie Mercury have created if he were granted the gift of long life? Bruce Lee? Princess Diana?

Their futures might be mere musings of our imagination, but thanks to a lot of creativity (and a little tech) we can now get a glimpse into what these celebrities might have looked like when they were older.

Alper Yesiltas, an Istanbul-based lawyer and photographer, created a photography series titled “As If Nothing Happened,” which features eerily realistic portraits of long gone celebrities in their golden years. To make the images as real looking as possible, Yesiltas incorporated various photo editing programs such as Adobe Lightroom and VSCO, as well as the AI photo-enhancing software Remini.

“The hardest part of the creative process for me is making the image feel ‘real’ to me,” Yesiltas wrote about his passion project. “The moment I like the most is when I think the image in front of me looks as if it was taken by a photographer.”

Yesiltas’ meticulousness paid off, because the results are uncanny.

Along with each photo, Yesiltas writes a bittersweet message “wishing” how things might have gone differently … as if nothing happened.
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All images provided by Adewole Adamson

It begins with more inclusive conversations at a patient level

True

Adewole Adamson, MD, of the University of Texas, Austin, aims to create more equity in health care by gathering data from more diverse populations by using artificial intelligence (AI), a type of machine learning. Dr. Adamson’s work is funded by the American Cancer Society (ACS), an organization committed to advancing health equity through research priorities, programs and services for groups who have been marginalized.

Melanoma became a particular focus for Dr. Adamson after meeting Avery Smith, who lost his wife—a Black woman—to the deadly disease.

melanoma,  melanoma for dark skin Avery Smith (left) and Adamson (sidenote)

This personal encounter, coupled with multiple conversations with Black dermatology patients, drove Dr. Adamson to a concerning discovery: as advanced as AI is at detecting possible skin cancers, it is heavily biased.

To understand this bias, it helps to first know how AI works in the early detection of skin cancer, which Dr. Adamson explains in his paper for the New England Journal of Medicine (paywall). The process uses computers that rely on sets of accumulated data to learn what healthy or unhealthy skin looks like and then create an algorithm to predict diagnoses based on those data sets.

This process, known as supervised learning, could lead to huge benefits in preventive care.

After all, early detection is key to better outcomes. The problem is that the data sets don’t include enough information about darker skin tones. As Adamson put it, “everything is viewed through a ‘white lens.’”

“If you don’t teach the algorithm with a diverse set of images, then that algorithm won’t work out in the public that is diverse,” writes Adamson in a study he co-wrote with Smith (according to a story in The Atlantic). “So there’s risk, then, for people with skin of color to fall through the cracks.”

Tragically, Smith’s wife was diagnosed with melanoma too late and paid the ultimate price for it. And she was not an anomaly—though the disease is more common for White patients, Black cancer patients are far more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, causing a notable disparity in survival rates between non-Hispanics whites (90%) and non-Hispanic blacks (66%).

As a computer scientist, Smith suspected this racial bias and reached out to Adamson, hoping a Black dermatologist would have more diverse data sets. Though Adamson didn’t have what Smith was initially looking for, this realization ignited a personal mission to investigate and reduce disparities.

Now, Adamson uses the knowledge gained through his years of research to help advance the fight for health equity. To him, that means not only gaining a wider array of data sets, but also having more conversations with patients to understand how socioeconomic status impacts the level and efficiency of care.

“At the end of the day, what matters most is how we help patients at the patient level,” Adamson told Upworthy. “And how can you do that without knowing exactly what barriers they face?”

american cancer society, skin cacner treatment"What matters most is how we help patients at the patient level."https://www.kellydavidsonstudio.com/

The American Cancer Society believes everyone deserves a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer—regardless of how much money they make, the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, gender identity, their disability status, or where they live. Inclusive tools and resources on the Health Equity section of their website can be found here. For more information about skin cancer, visit cancer.org/skincancer.

The mesmerizing lost art of darning knit fabric.

For most of human history, people had to make their own clothing by hand, and sewing skills were subsequently passed down from generation to generation. Because clothing was so time-consuming and labor-intensive to make, people also had to know how to repair clothing items that got torn or damaged in some way.

The invention of sewing and knitting machines changed the way we acquire clothing, and the skills people used to possess have largely gone by the wayside. If we get a hole in a sock nowadays, we toss it and replace it. Most of us have no idea how to darn a sock or fix a hole in any knit fabric. It's far easier for us to replace than to repair.

But there are still some among us who do have the skills to repair clothing in a way that makes it look like the rip, tear or hole never happened, and to watch them do it is mesmerizing.

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Joy

Nurse turns inappropriate things men say in the delivery room into ‘inspirational’ art

"Can you move to the birthing ball so I can sleep in the bed?"

Holly the delivery nurse.

After working six years as a labor and delivery nurse Holly, 30, has heard a lot of inappropriate remarks made by men while their partners are in labor. “Sometimes the moms think it’s funny—and if they think it’s funny, then I’ll laugh with them,” Holly told TODAY Parents. “But if they get upset, I’ll try to be the buffer. I’ll change the subject.”

Some of the comments are so wrong that she did something creative with them by turning them into “inspirational” quotes and setting them to “A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton on TikTok.

“Some partners are hard to live up to!” she jokingly captioned the video.

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